CC BY 4.0 · Journal of Child Science 2023; 13(01): e113-e117
DOI: 10.1055/s-0043-1772206
Original Article

Genotoxic and Cytotoxic Effects of Dental Radiographic Modalities on Buccal Mucosal Cells in Children

1   Department of Pediatric Dentistry, School of Dentistry, Zanjan University of Medical Sciences, Zanjan, Iran
2   Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology, School of Dentistry, Zanjan University of Medical Sciences, Zanjan, Iran
3   Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Radiology, Faculty of Dentistry, Tabriz University of Medical Sciences, Tabriz, Iran
3   Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Radiology, Faculty of Dentistry, Tabriz University of Medical Sciences, Tabriz, Iran
› Author Affiliations


Dental radiography is an important diagnostic tool for the detection and assessment of the extent of dental caries and accurate treatment planning. There is no safe limit for X-ray exposure. The associated risks of X-ray exposure are higher in children due to a higher rate of cell proliferation in them, compared with adults. This study aimed to assess the genotoxic and cytotoxic effects of dental radiographic modalities on buccal mucosal cells in children. This interventional study evaluated 80 children between 3 and 12 years who required periapical, panoramic, bitewing, or bitewing plus panoramic radiography for treatment planning. Twenty eligible patients were assigned to each of the aforementioned four groups. Buccal mucosal cells were scraped bilaterally by a plastic spatula after complete rinsing of the oral cavity. The collected specimens were directly mounted on microscopic slides and after air-drying, they were fixed with 80% methanol and Giemsa stain. The cells were then inspected under a light microscope at 400x magnification for cytogenetic changes. Data were tabulated and analyzed by SPSS version 20 at a p < 0.001 level of significance. The results showed a significant increase in the frequency of karyolysis, karyorrhexis, and pyknosis in all four groups after dental radiography (p < 0.001). Also, the number of micronuclei significantly increased after panoramic plus bitewing radiography (p < 0.05). X-ray exposure in panoramic, periapical, bitewing, and bitewing plus panoramic radiographies can be cytotoxic, while bitewing plus panoramic radiography can be genotoxic in children as well.

Publication History

Received: 16 May 2023

Accepted: 06 July 2023

Article published online:
11 August 2023

© 2023. The Author(s). This is an open access article published by Thieme under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, permitting unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction so long as the original work is properly cited. (

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